Investment / Starting Out

The Complete Guide to Running a Ski Chalet Rental in France

So, you’ve taken the decision to purchase a property and establish an exciting new rental business in the Alps. You’ve got a business plan, timelines and financial goals in place, and your chalet is receiving bookings. This is the time you’ll want to start thinking about how to take your business to the next level.

In this post, we’re going to cover everything you need to know about running a ski chalet in France. We’ll be discussing the day-to-day, what guests look for, seasonality and how you can optimise your income going forwards. 

What does a typical day running a chalet business look like?

Running a chalet in the Alps is a varied role, with an average day vastly depending on how you decide to manage your business. There are generally three potential scenarios:

1. You manage everything

In this instance, you’ll be hands-on and handling all of the tasks involved in renting a ski chalet. This includes advertising your property, managing your calendar and taking bookings. You’ll also have to factor in the cleaning, preparation and maintenance of the chalet, greet guests and be on hand for them throughout their stay. 

Of course, you’ll need to be based near your property to do this, and it does come with its disadvantages. It’s a time-consuming and often demanding role which can make it difficult to generate optimum revenue. You’ll also likely be dependent on local tourist offices and online travel agents to list your property, who can take around 15% per booking.

A woman holding cleaning products and polishing a window.
Managing the property independently gives you complete autonomy over your business, but some aspects can be a lot more time-consuming. Image by Andrea Piacquadio.

2. You manage the ‘non-physical’ aspects

If you’re based some distance from your property or don’t have the time to take on all aspects of running a ski chalet business, you may choose this option. You’ll likely be working with a concierge or property manager to run the physical aspects (cleaning, laundry, meeting guests, maintenance etc). Your daily tasks will involve advertising your chalet, taking bookings and managing your calendar. 

Although this is less time-consuming than the previous situation, it’s still a challenging role, especially if you’re not an expert in the field. You’ll still probably need to pay the commission to OTA’s and tourist offices for bookings, but also have the cost of property managers and cleaning teams. 

3. You utilise an expert property management company

If you don’t have the time, knowledge or desire to take on the management of your property, this is the solution for you. It also removes any language barriers you may encounter when running a ski chalet in France. You can be based elsewhere and generate a healthy income without having to worry about being involved in the daily operations of the business. Not only does this free up your time, but it also helps you to achieve optimal revenue by having specialists manage all aspects of your property, including advertising. 

Although this is the costliest option, the returns will likely be higher due to working with experienced, professional teams. The priority here is to choose a company with the right credentials that you can trust to successfully run your business. 

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What do guests look for in a ski chalet rental property?

When renting a ski chalet in the Alps, you want to ensure that you stay up to date with the needs and wants of potential guests. This will mean that you can attract the maximum number of bookings all year round. Ever-popular amenities include swimming pools, hot tubs and saunas, but for more in-depth advice, check out our ‘Construction and Design’ and ‘Earn More’ archives to discover new ways to improve your property.

The indoor hot tub at Chalet Goville with a snowy mountain view.
Guests love this scenic hot tub at Chalet Goville, La Giettaz.

As well as looking to have a broad appeal, it also pays to target specific demographics that relate to your property and business goals. For example, you may want to focus on familieswellness travellershikers, cyclists or remote workers. You may also want to think about whether or not you’d like to welcome pet owners to your property. Investing in amenities that make your chalet stand out from the crowd can pay dividends over time.

Should you rent out your property all year round?

Seasonality is both an important business and personal consideration. If you’re looking for maximum yield, you’ll want to make certain that you’re making your property available during peak weeks. A week in high season can be equivalent in revenue to three off-shoulder weeks.

Despite this, if your priority is return on investment, off-season bookings, if priced appropriately, can significantly contribute to your total income. For more in-depth information on this, head on over to our post titled ‘Is a ski chalet a good investment?

How to get the most out of your rental business

With all of this considered, what’s the best way to keep those bookings rolling in, keep guests coming back for more and maximise your profits? Finding a property management solution via a company you can trust to expertly advertise, manage and scale your business. Here at OVO Network, we offer an attractive choice of two solutions to suit all needs: pro and complete.

We know our guest base inside out, advertise across a multitude of platforms and evaluate a wide range of data to continually boost our owners’ revenue. Our advanced channel management system makes bookings a breeze and our experienced PR specialists, SEO experts and marketing teams ensure our content is always relevant. 

Running a ski chalet in France is a diverse and rewarding investment. If you’re ready to take the next step to grow your business, OVO Network can help. Contact us for a comprehensive analysis of your business to enhance your earnings and take the stress out of ski chalet rental. Don’t forget to try our holiday let income calculator to see what you could be making.

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